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Delay Disease
By Ramon Arjona

Several decades ago, a young cleric named Siashton Mith decided to devote his life to the study of divine healing. So dedicated was he to his chosen field that his grasp of healing magic soon surpassed that of his teachers, and he established his own hospital.

In the course of his work, Siashton developed a number of unique healing spells. Many of these spells were intended to help inexperienced clerics temporarily stave off the worst effects of illness or injury in their patients until more powerful aid became available.

One of the best-known spells that he developed during this period was delay disease, a spell that would halt the progress of a disease until suitable healing could be found. With this spell, several young clerics in a remote area were able to hold at bay a plague that might otherwise have destroyed an entire village. When rescuers arrived expecting to find only corpses, they were greeted by villagers who were only mildly ill. The experienced clerics in the rescue party were able to eradicate the disease quickly. Word spread quickly that because of Siashton Mith, the plague had claimed no lives in that village, and the healer's reputation grew.

Delay Disease
Conjuration (Healing)
Level: Clr 2
Components: V, S, DF
Casting Time: 1 full round

Target: Creature touched
Duration: 1 day
Saving Throw: Will negates (harmless)
Spell Resistance: Yes (harmless)

The subject becomes temporarily immune to the ravages of disease. The progress of any nonmagical disease that already afflicts the target is halted for the duration of the spell. Delay disease allows the subject to skip the required saving throw against the disease for the day that the spell is in effect. During this period, the subject accrues no further ability damage from the disease. A skipped saving throw counts as neither a success nor a failure for the purpose of recovery from the disease. Furthermore, the incubation period of any disease to which the subject is exposed during the spell's duration does not begin until the spell expires. Delay disease does not cure any damage that a disease may already have dealt, and it has no effect against magical or supernatural diseases.

About the Author

Ramon Arjona is a software developer with Wizards of the Coast. His poetry has appeared in the Absinthe Literary Review and the Hawaii Review. His short stories have appeared in Strange Horizons.

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